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PEOPLE GET THEIR SAY ON NEW MILTON KEYNES PARTNERSHIP COMMITTEE FOR GROWTH

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Communities in and around Milton Keynes can now give their views on ...
Communities in and around Milton Keynes can now give their views on

proposals for a new Milton Keynes Partnership Committee, when public

consultation begins today.

The partnership committee will oversee development across Milton

Keynes and exercise development control powers for all major planning

applications within specific areas of Milton Keynes.

These areas, falling under the committee's remit, will then form an

urban development area.

The aim of the committee will be to ensure that major planning

decisions are effectively co-ordinated by interested parties

including local authorities, English Partnerships and representatives

from the private sector and the local strategic partnership.

The town and the surrounding area are integral parts of the Milton

Keynes and South Midlands Growth Area, and the partnership committee

will carefully manage development to prevent urban sprawl, while

allowing the local economy to realise its potential.

People living and working in Milton Keynes, and the area around it,

will have between now and Monday 1 March 2004 to give their views, in

writing or via e-mail.

Launching the consultation paper, regeneration minister Jeff Rooker

said:

'The proposed Milton Keynes partnership committee consultation will

make sure that local communities have their say, and I want people to

tell me where they think the boundaries should be, and what powers it

should have.

'One of the aims of the growth area is to prevent urban sprawl

through managed and considered development, and the partnership

committee will help make that possible.

'This is all about partnership between central government, the local

authority and, most importantly, the existing community, and I'm

looking forward to hearing what that community thinks.'

The proposed Milton Keynes Urban Development Area Consultation

document can be found on the ODPM's website.

Notes

1. As part of the partnership committee proposals, an urban

development area would be designated within which the committee will

take on development control powers for major planning applications.

The committee will include the local authority, English Partnerships

and other local partners.

2. The partnership committee will also exercise all of English

Partnership's other powers with respect to the development of land in

and around Milton Keynes.

3. In the Sustainable Communities Plan, announced on 5 February 2003,

the deputy prime minister set out an action programme to deliver

sustainable communities for all. The plan highlights the important

part that Milton Keynes will play in the economic development of the

South East.

4. A follow-up statement about the growth areas was made on 30 July

2003. In this, the deputy prime minister announced the proposals for

Milton Keynes.

A press release from English Partnerships follows.

PARTNERSHIP COMMITTEE RECOGNISES MILTON KEYNES' SPECIAL STATUS

The government has put forward plans to create a special partnership committee to deliver growth in Milton Keynes based on its discussions with Milton Keynes Council and national regeneration agency, English Partnerships. The committee will build on the existing working relationships that have led to the town's status as the country's fastest growing urban area, capable of bringing forward rapid, well-planned growth.

Under the proposals the key local bodies - Milton Keynes Council and English Partnerships - will lead the new Milton Keynes Partnership Committee along with members drawn from the business and voluntary sectors. The new committee is expected to be formalised at the end of April 2004, following a wide-scale public consultation programme during January and February, being organised by the ODPM.

Milton Keynes has been earmarked by g overnment as a major focus for expansion in the Milton Keynes/South Midlands Growth Area, defined in the Sustainable Communities Plan. To capitalise on and strengthen the existing working relationships within the town, the committee will be given additional powers to drive forward new sustainable development.

The Milton Keynes Partnership Committee will be able to speed up delivery but at the same maintain the quality of the environment, facilities and services currently enjoyed by the people of Milton Keynes.

Margaret Ford, chairman of English Partnerships said: 'I want to emphasise that this partnership approach is a model fit for the 21st century challenges we face in this important growth area. The partnership committee brings together the local authority, the private sector and English Partnerships (the national regeneration agency) to ensure that the growth of the town is co-ordinated, focused and brought forward in a way that will lead to high quality sustainable communities.'

Isobel Wilson, leader of Milton Keynes Council adds: 'A strong level of representation by Milton Keynes Council and local partners on the committee will ensure that sufficient focus is placed on building communities in Milton Keynes and not just putting up a lot of new housing estates.'

The proposals include the designation of an area - the Urban Development Area (UDA) - where significant new growth is expected to occur. The committee would take on development control powers for major planning applications within the UDA, while the local authority would continue to be responsible for all other planning matters including planning applications in established areas.

An important part of the creation of the committee is the public consultation exercise which is seen by government as a crucial mechanism for local people to have their say in the future of their area.

Launching the consultation programme, regeneration minister, Jeff Rooker said: 'The proposed Milton Keynes Partnership Comm ittee consultation will make sure that local communities have their say, and I want people to tell me where they think the boundaries should be, and what powers it should have.

'One of the aims of the growth area is to prevent urban sprawl through managed and considered development and the partnership committee will help make that possible,' he added.

The proposed Milton Keynes Urban Development Area Consultation document can be found on the ODPM website at www.odpm.gov.uk/urban/consult

Notes

1.As part of the partnership committee proposals, an Urban Development Area would be designated within which the committee will take on development control powers for major planning applications. The committee will include the local authority, English Partnerships and other local partners.

2.The partnership committee will also exercise all of English Partnerships' other powers with respect to the development of land in Milton Keynes.

3.In the Sustainable Communities Plan, announced on 5 February 2003, the deputy prime minister set out an action programme to deliver sustainable communities for all. The plan highlights the important part that Milton Keynes will play in the economic development of the South East.

4.A follow-up statement about the Growth Area was made on 30 July 2003. In this, the deputy prime minister announced the proposals for Milton Keynes. To find out more about these proposals, log on to the ODPM website at www.odpm.gov.uk/stellent/groups/odpm_communities/documents/page/odpm_comm_023301-07.hcsp#P169_32646

5.English Partnerships is the national regeneration agency supporting high quality sustainable growth across the country. It does this by, building affordable homes and new communities, bringing new life to established communities, making best use of the nation's scarce supply of land and promoting skills, best practice and sustainability. Further information on initiatives and projects can be found at www.englishpartnerships.co.uk.

6.Population growth in Milton Keynes: The borough of Milton Keynes is the fastest growing district in the country. Between 1981 and 2001 its population increased by 64.4 per cent, whereas the population of England increased by only 5.0 per cent (Source: 1981 and 2001 Censuses - Crown Copyright).

7.Employment: Research published by Business Strategies in January 2002 placed Milton Keynes first in the UK employment league table. The number of people employed in the town rose by 36,100 in the preceding 10 years, the biggest increase in the whole of the UK.

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